Question: Curriculum development from a traditionalist perspective is widely used across schools in Canada and other countries. Can you think about: (a) The ways in which you may have experienced the Tyler rationale in your own schooling? (b) What are the major limitations of the Tyler rationale in your own schooling? (c) What are some potential benefits?
Tyler rationalizes that the curriculum content is set by what knowledge the students “need” to know to excel in their lifetime. From there, it is up to the students to discover where the information that they learned in class fits into the real world. I can relate this to how content is taught in university. In education classes, the professors provide me with the materials and instruction, which are classified as objectives, that I need to have to be a successful educator. It is my decision to put this information to use in my practices, or not to.
Two of the major contributions to students learning that Tyler’s rationale serves are providing consistency and direction. In each grade, the content is outlined and the teacher has to cover each indicator and outcome. There is direction provided on how to achieve each outcome. I believe there are many implications in regards to Tyler’s rationale. One being, the shift away from a more child-centred approach. I view the method as a ‘one size fits all’ t-shirt, but in regards to their education. I strongly agree with an implication that was suggested in the reading where,
“The focus on pre-specified goals may lead both educators and learners to overlook learning that is occurring as a result of their interactions, but which is not listed as an objective.”
Teachers HAVE to be aware of the learning that is occurring amongst their students even if it not included in the outcomes and indicators. If educators take the opportunity to share what is mentioned in the curriculum, as well as, what is not mentioned, it will allow the students to make connections and expand their thinking.